This week’s selected media: December 31, 2023: Drug Dealer, MD; Supernova in the East; Flags of our Fathers; Letters From Iwo Jima; Video Sales Letter Training; Urban Cycling

December 31, 2023 by Joshua
in Tips

This week I finished:

Drug Dealer, MD, by Anna Lembke: She wrote this book before Dopamine Nation, which I finished last week. You know someone likes a book when after finishing it he reads the author’s previous book the next week. Drug Dealer, MD wasn’t as personal as Dopamine Nation, but described the growth of addiction well. She described the systemic forces driving doctors, insurance companies, government, medical associations, patients, and more.

She traces the underlying forces to capitalism without being partisan. She didn’t trace the forces that drove capitalism, so think she could have gone deeper to understand why people think they’re helping when they’re hurting. She talks about living in a world of abundance and technology, but only a few times addressed that people deliberately aim to addict people, though maybe outside the book’s focus, in areas outside drugs, especially apps, also fast fashion, TV, doof, video games, gambling, and I’m probably forgetting others. It’s not just technology; it’s people seeing how they can use technology to addict.

As always, when people talk about food addictions, I’d distinguish doof from food. I don’t know what fraction of what’s called food addiction is doof addiction.

Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History series Supernova in the East: I love Carlin’s work. It took a while to finish this series. It led me to watch the movies Flags of our Fathers and Letters From Iwo Jima. Collectively, they taught me a lot about the Pacific theater of World War II. I recommend them all.

My mother’s father served in the Pacific. He died the year I was born, so never learned about his service. These works got me thinking about it, though I’ll never know what he saw. I don’t think he shared with my mom or even his wife. I’d always learned more about the European theater, my father’s side of the family having emigrated from Poland between the wars.

John Benson’s video sales letter training: A friend whose successful business relies on online marketing suggested learning VSLs from Benson, their creators. Starting a movement isn’t marketing a product, but they overlap. I’m starting a movement and see a lot I can learn from this style.

A few videos on making cities safer, more livable, and more accessible for all, based on developments in Holland and Paris, especially, as well as the longest video yet from Not Just Bikes (whose host, Jason Slaughter, was a guest on This Sustainable Life)

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